COMMUNITY Fall of Bataan in the Philippines remembered
CHAMBER NEW MEMBERS: Filipino American Chamber of Commerce of Orange County president-elect Para Anderson introduces the new members of the Chamber at its March mixer-networking in Huntington Beach. FACCOC has been one of the most effective voices for Fil-Am entrepreneurs in Orange County organized 17 years ago.
LA CARLOTA OFFICERS INDUCTED: Vice- Consul General Raul Gunabe of the Philippine Consulate-Los Angeles inducts into offi ce the 2011-2013 offi cers of La Carlota City Association of America recently. The offi cers include (from L) Yvonne Yulo-Solidum (ex-offi cio), Basil Heria, Nestor Labayen, Li Gareza, Francisco Gacho, Angeles Trocino, Lemuel and Lalaine Cabuguason, Nenetter Guintu, Grace Labayen, Angelina Golez (President), Hortencia Fran Jover, Ramon Golez, Lalaine Jover-Villanueva,, Butch de los Reyes, Liza Leinore Jover- VIllanueva, Raymund Golez, Giovanni Gacho. Offi cers not in picture: Sonny Guintu, Vicente de la Cruz, Nenita Rongo, Zeny Custodio & Reynaldo Monteio.
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OR the dwindling few and their families who were involved in the conflicts of World War II, the bloodiness and enormous cost of the tragic event that happened 70 years ago in the Pacific will not just be a historical footnote as it left deep scars that forever will remind them of man’s propensity to resort to the use of force to settle conflicts. World War II is considered the deadliest military conflict in history which snuffed the lives of over 70 million. Collateral civilian casualties were estimated at from 40-52 million, including 13-20 million who succumbed due to war-related diseases and famine. Civilians killed totaled from 40 to 52 million, including 13 to 20 million from war-related disease and famine.
Total military dead: from 22 to 25 million, including deaths in captivity of about 5 million prisoners of war.
Filipinos of the earlier generation re- member the hardships they had to endure
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April 6, 2011 Balita
BY RAY ANDRES
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as victims of the war and some of them including women are still waiting to be justly compensated for their sufferings. The Bataan Death March was etched in the annals of war history because of its sheer cruelty, bloodiness and the triumph of man’s spirit. The horrific event stretching several thorny miles put the Philippines in world’s war map that will serve as a reminder of his physical and emotional struggles.
The war drama started in Dec., 1941 shortly after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and assumed significance in many ways. The Bataan Death March involved nearly 70,000 Americans and Filipinos captured and made prisoners of war (POW) by the Japanese and were forced to march 55 miles from Mariveles, Bataan to San Fernando, Pampanga in Luzon. On their long journey, these POWs were beaten with sticks, kicked and badly abused.
who would fall were shot. Roughly 54,000 made it to the camp were more miseries awaited them. The Filipino Americans involved in the war was part of the war strategy to stall the Japanese advancement in Northern Luzon and South Mindanao for as long as pos- sible to enable the American Pacific Fleet to rebuild its capabilities.
American defense did not materialize as it was bogged down by shortage of food, ammunition, medicine and others. Malnu- trition, disease, fatigue and lack of basic war materiel hampered the effectiveness of the combined forces and surrendered to the Japanese later. The vanquished were assembled in various parts of Bataan but mostly in Mariveles by the Japanese. Although American trucks were avail- able to transport the prisoners, the Japanese decided to march the Defenders of Bataan to their destinations. This grueling journey came to be known as the “Death March” which was actually a series of marches that lasted five to nine days with the distance determined by the trail a captive began. The basic trail of the Death March was a
See ANDRES, page 13
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